Physicians are taught the motto, “First, do no harm.” As a local painting company, we find that the same holds true in our field! Our goal is to enhance the beauty and protection of the surfaces we paint, but we also need to be careful not to cause damage to any other area of the home, including the landscaping. Here are a few ideas of what you need to be careful of, so that you can complete your exterior house painting without ruining your landscaping.
Ladder Safety for Exterior Painting
The primary reason to be careful with ladders is to avoid injuring any people. A secondary reason is that ladders can also cause damage to the property, whether that be the siding, the windows, or the landscaping.
In order to avoid personal injury or property damage, here are a few ladder safety tips:
- Always set ladders on firm, even ground. This prevents tipping.
- On soft ground, use flat squares of wood or a pivot tool under the ladder legs. This prevents the legs from sinking in, which can cause the ladder to tip, and it can damage landscaping fabric or flower beds.
- Use the right type of ladder for the job you are doing. Using a ladder in a way it is not intended is very risky.
- Each time you move the ladder, do it carefully and methodically. Do not rush, but take your time to choose the ladder placement, avoiding potential hazards.
- Test the ladder’s stability before you climb it. If it wobbles, get off and change the placement.
- Do not climb higher than the ladder is intended for, nor reach or lean out to the side.
Remember, a ladder that tips or falls is likely to hurt you, and it can cause damage to your home exterior and landscaping.
Caution with Hoses
Hoses can be an important part of exterior house painting. First, every paint job needs to begin with a thorough cleaning of the walls, which can involve a pressure washer or a garden hose. Either way, hoses are needed. Additionally, in certain situations spray painting equipment is a necessary way to paint a home exterior. Again, this involves the use of hoses.
While a hose might not pose a hazard to life and limb, it can certainly damage landscaping. When a homeowner is in the middle of a project and needs more hose, it is natural to pull the hose from the end. The problem is that this can drag the hose over small plants and flowers, crushing or breaking them.
Instead, begin your project by unwinding the whole length of the hose, and lay it out in such a way that it is not running near or between delicate plants. When you need more hose, pause the job and reset the layout of the whole hose, rather than pulling from one end.
Tarps and Drop Cloths
In order to prevent paint from getting on surfaces it is not supposed to be on, professional house painters and do-it-yourselfers generally use some kind of drop cloth. Whether it is a tarp, an old blanket, or a large piece of canvas, this is a good way to protect the surrounding area.
Drop cloths pose two hazards to your landscaping. The first hazard is the weight. A tarp or canvas drop cloth can easily crush flowers or delicate plants, as well as break branches on bushes and shrubs. To prevent this, find a way to hold the drop cloths up off of the plants. You could use wooden stakes, tomato cages, or a wide variety of items you might have in your home or garage. Also, it is better to go with lighter materials, such as old bed sheets or light weight dropcloths, since these have less substance to them. Finally, use multiple smaller drop cloths, rather than trying to cover the whole area with a single large one.
The second hazard is suffocation and burning. The longer a drop cloth is over a plant, the more damage it can cause. On a hot day, it is amazing how quickly grass and leaves can be burned, especially under plastic.The way to avoid this is by minimizing the length of time the drop cloths cover the plants, especially in direct sunlight.
Be Methodical during Exterior House Painting
There are numerous other ways in which carelessness or hurry can cause personal injury or property damage. The best way to avoid them is to take your time, and use your common sense as you prepare for each stage of your exterior painting process.
At Southington Painting, we take great care to do no harm. We value the safety and wellbeing of our clients, as well as of our painting crews. Ongoing training and education is a regular part of our work, making sure that all our employees are equipped to produce fantastic results and avoid any risky actions.
Contact Southington Painting for a free estimate on exterior house painting. If you have any special concerns about your landscaping, please share this with our estimator, and we can be sure to provide maximum protection for the things you value. We look forward to working with you!